i do a lot of lot distance touring … my kayak a current designs nomad…am fairly strong …stroke style between vertical and 45 degrees …would a mid wing be suitable for touring or is it more suited for “racing” and /or fitness .right now i use a werner touring paddle.any advice prreciated …thanks stan
You can certainly paddle a wing touring. But you would have to commit to learning to paddle it, and then paddle that way when you tour. The touring blade is a little more relaxing.
Use a wing exclusively
Most of my paddles are solo, long distance and I tend to paddle fast. I like the light weight, efficiency and power that the wing provides. Learning to use it is simple. A wing tends to follow it’s own path through the water, regardless of your angle of stroke.
Wing in Nomad
I used Epic Mid Wing in the CD Extreme (aka the Nomad) for almost a year. Certainly works well. I don’t usually do “touring” though, more like quick-pace exercise paddling and the wing works very well for that. For touring at a longer distances and more moderate paces I would suggest you try small-mid size wings: still lots of power but a little less paddle to handle hour after hour.
The Nomad is fairly fat in the paddle entry section (it is something like 20" there if I recall). That will somewhat diminish the effectiveness of a wing since it works best with a narrow close to the centerline catch position.
Also, while I have intentionally used my wing paddle (and still use it) in rough water, if it gets really rough, I switch to a flat surface paddle (Euro or GP, depending on what I have with me). Braces are simply not as reliable with the wing: a high brace/sweep is more powerful than anything else out there and works great, but if you miss that brace/sweep (say due to foamy water/currents), you can’t go link with a forward sweep high-brace to rightyourself like you can with a flat paddle, so you have to roll… Same goes for low braces - a little harder to control the reverse sweep on a low brace if your forward sweep fails.
of Britain, who many of you probably have met or know, is experimenting with wings right now and having fun with it. He’s got some New Zealand wings on a Lendal shaft that’s he’s playing with. Lot’s of folk are enjoying wings, so I say go for it and have some fun exploring the differences.
I will never go back to a Euro since
getting used to my wing.
It is easier on the arms, shoulders, and just about guides itself through the water.
I basically use it with a higher angle than the euro, but today I was in a foot of water for miles and miles and it works just as sweet with a low angle
A good friend from the UK and his wife who paddles with us every other day and is BCU rated three or four stars or what ever, borrowed ours the other day to try them out, and claims that I just cost him about six hundred dollars. He is ordering one for himself and his wife as soon as they get back to the UK.
Speaking for myself, I would get a small ONNO wing. I had the Epic ,mid wing and it worked me to death.
Single for touring
If I’m doing anything other than racing/training in my kayaks I use a very short single blade bent shaft paddle (ZRE). I love my Onno mid tour euro paddle and my Epic small-mid wing but they both feel like clubs compared to the 10 oz ZRE.
Using the single blade is almost effortless and gives up nothing in terms of speed unless you’re really pushing it. I’ve used it in my QCC 600, Epic 18x and WSBS Thunderbolt (calm water only for that one) and love it. Don’t know why more people don’t try it. Especially effective if you have a rudder so you don’t have to switch sides as often.
Plus it just feels so much nicer in the hand (to me anyway) and there’s no drips on your hands/lap if you slow the cadence.
Iteresting thougts on the single blade
Off-topic but I think worth a few posts anyway -
I got intrigued by a single blade in kayak idea this summer and made myself a short-handled paddle out of scrap materials. The first one broke in “normal use” but was enough to confirm the shape/size for me. I’m on my second one with some carbon reinforcements and it has held-up fine so far.
My observation is that it works very well in straight tracking boats (or with rudder) if I do not try to exceed my easy cruising speeds (that is probably going at 70% of my faster exercise speeds with a wing, e.g. 4.5 mph vs 5.5-6mph in my fast boat).
Indeed, the single blade feels so much lighter: it is probably just about 1/2 the weight of my wing, but also less than 1/2 the swing weight. Add some wind and it is even better - nothing in the air -;). But I do not like it for more “active” paddling such as catching hard to catch waves to surf or for whitewater - two blades are better than one there -;). Basically, makes an excellent spare/alternative.
While mine’s not a ZRE, it is a nice 12 degree bent and probably less than a pound light and feels just fine in the water. More importantly, does not cost me an arm and a leg: a scrap peice of 1/4" okume plywood, a scrap piece of a curtain rod, two scrap pieces of carbon cloth, and a couple of ounces of epoxy - pretty much free since I already had these as leftovers from other projects…
I’ve had superlight carbon euro paddles and loved them UNTIL I got a wing. I will never go back. I’ve found bracing to be solid with a wing - both low and high… personally I’ve found foamy confused water to be much easier to manage with the mid-wing than with the euro. A small-mid is perfect for longer, easier paddles, and I agree with a previous poster that a low-angle style works too. While I’ve never paddled with an ONNO wing, I have found my Epics (mid and small) to be bulletproof, light, and quality paddles… and worth every penny.
wing paddle for touring
I bought a wing paddle last year as I wanted to explore the possibility of touring with it. After using it for some time I decided against it. The main reason is that I felt more comfortable maneuvering the boat with a Euro. If my touring was one or two long stretches on the water and then stopping for the night, I might consider the wing, but I like to check things out as I go along- paddle around and between rocks, mess about a bit in surf, surf wind waves, check out wildlife etc., which I felt much better doing with a euro. The wing also requires a much more consistent stroke which could get a bit dull after a long time.
One major benefit in getting the wing though was improving my euro stroke- turned out my plant was not vertical enough, and I was wasting power pushing water down on the start of the stroke. The wing showed this right away, and when I made the same adjustment with my euro, I was much more efficient.
Wing is great for touring unless…
you like to do a lot of specialized strokes. I use my wing for everything. i’ve found it works great for braces, for me. It does take a commitment to get used to it. I wouldn’t take it on a long tour without having used it a dozen times on shorter paddles.
My feeling echos JackL
I use my wing for racing and race training only. As a matter of fact in the winter I use my plastic boat (CD Sirocco) and my heaviest touring paddle (Werner Corryvrecken) for my 10 to 15 mile non-stop paddles. I do this because I am out there to be a stronger paddler. FYI; wings first showed up in the Olympics in the early 1980’s and since then the times are only about 2 percent faster. If you do feel you need a wing, I have an Epic mid, a Jantex large minus and have used an ONNO - I would recommend the Jantex.
Some good info here …
I would like to add that you would probably want to consider a smaller wing for all round use. You still have the awesome efficiency but takes a little less out of you and the smaller-than-“Mid” wings are a better match for sea kayaks and distance/performance paddling… Unless you are super strong or prefer a slow ’ big ring ’ type cadence that is.
Most of the people I train with use a mid or smaller wing and use them all year and it seems to work well for them. It was a little unfair of me to recommend the Jantex over the Onno since I only use an Onno when I swap with a partner on training runs. I did have quality issues with Epic though.
Hi Kaptyn … LOL … I’m not sure if
you were responding to my post or in general as after re-reading mine, it looks like I am responding to yours as well ... Such is a forum eh ? My reply does seem to fit after yours ... By "You" I meant the OP. Apologies for any confusion : )
I love my wing for all kayaking
Go with a small blade for long distance.
Hi Dave, Did you ever get a small wing ?
I tried one in my mohican and tipped
The mohican is narrow and is like a bike , it likes to move. Sculling away froma dock with a paddle with different twist is tough. I swam and decided to stick with big blade even though my right wrist would be happy with smaller than the biggest turbo.